Her family would later find out Henrietta was misdiagnosed. Henrietta went to John Hopkins for treatment due to it being the only hospital in her area who would treat African Americans. Many doctors during this time would use the public for research without the patient’s consent, and this happened to Henrietta. Without Henrietta’s permissions, a doctor treating Henrietta’s tumor proceeded to take tissue from her cancer tumors and her healthy cervical tissue. Her tissue ended up in Gey’s lab which were named HeLa. Two days later Henrietta’s cells began growing, and soon after Gey began giving samples of HeLa to his closest colleagues (Skloot 41). Henrietta never knew of her cells growing in the lab. Unfortunately, Henrietta’s cancer began to spread throughout her body. Treatment was not working for Henrietta, and she passed away October 4th, 1951 (Skloot 86). No one knew who Henrietta was for a long time, and she lost a lot of time of receiving credit for her cells. Henrietta’s cells ended up being sold for a profit by a manufacturer. Her family did not receive anything from Henrietta’s cells being used. Henrietta’s cells helped changed the medical world. Her cells were used for creating a polio vaccine and IVF. They also helped understand HPV, HIV, and AIDs. Henrietta’s cells have done a lot for cancer research. However, Henrietta’s family suffered deeply after her death, and
In the novel, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, by Rebecca Skloot, scientists steal cancerous cells from a middle aged black woman named Henrietta Lacks without her consent. She soon passed away and her cells were then put in culture and, unlike any other cells previously, succeeded in growing and reproducing outside of the body. This new breakthrough led to a scientific revolution that changed the world as we know it. The cells, called HeLa, were mass produced in factories and distributed all around the world. They allowed scientists to conduct studies and experiments that were impossible before; consequently, numerous new discoveries and cures were made and polio was eradicated. However, Henrietta’s family had no idea what her cells did
The National institute of Health, Rebecca Skloot, and John Hopkins Hospital have distorted Henrietta Lacks Legacy. In 1951, the Johns Hopkins Hospital took cervical cancer cells from Henrietta Lacks, and developed the HeLa cell line. Neither Henrietta nor her family gave the hospital permission to use her cells at the time. Her cells contributed to major medical discoveries, including the development of polio vaccine. Henrietta’s family was never compensated for the money that they made off of her cells. It was not until 1973 that her children discovered, by accident, that their mother's cells, now immortalized, had become a major boon to medicine and that many people had become rich from marketing them. Ron Henrietta’s
Dr. George Gey decides that he wants to do an autopsy on Henrietta once she passes away, he explains to Day, husband of Henrietta, that they "wanted to run tests that might help his children one day" (89-90). Scientists discover many vaccines using Henrietta's cells, but the Lackses cannot receive health insurance, " If our mother is so important to science, why can't we get health insurance?"(168). The family of the woman who's cells help save millions of lives cannot receive health insurance, proves that Henrietta and her family are viewed as an abstraction to the scientific community. Scientists and the media are making millions of dollars off of HeLa cells, and not once do they help Henrietta's family come out of poverty. "She's the most important person in the world and her family living in poverty" (168).
Henrietta was bleeding abnormally. Her husband took her to John Hopkins hospital. Henrietta was diagnosed with cervical cancer, but they had never seen something like hers. Sadly, Henrietta died but John Hopkins Hospital discovered her cells multiplied twice, every 24 hours. Medicine has changed forever ever since her mortal cells were discovered. Her cells were sent out to different places around the U.S Europe, Asia, and India. Her cells helped develop the polio vaccines, they were able to run many neutralization tests on her cells. For 30 years they had been in search of cells that lived outside of the human body, and they had finally made it. Scientists were able to clone her cells. The cells helped them gain information on how viruses attacked human cells. Her cells were also used to see how steroids worked for chemotherapy and tuberculosis. They were so amazed by her cells that they thought they had found the cure to cancer. Her family found out about their mother’s cells in 1976 when her story was published in a Rolling Stone magazine with her real name. HELA is the name they gave her cells short for Henrietta Lacks. HELA cells became very efficient for many different uses in all. Today, HELA cells have saved many people
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot is a nonfiction book about Henrietta Lacks, an African American woman living in the 1920’s-1950’s. When she was thirty, doctors diagnosed Henrietta with cervical cancer. Doctors at John’s Hopkins took her cells without her permission and used these cells to create the first and most widely used cell line, named HeLa after Henrietta’s initials. Soon after the doctors took Henrietta’s cells, she died from her vicious cervical cancer, however her cells lived on in the hands of scientists around the world. Since then, her cells have been mass produced and used to test the polio vaccine, research cancer, AIDS, radiation, and human longevity, and develop drugs for treating herpes, leukemia, and hemophilia. Henrietta’s family did not know anything about the HeLa cell line until twenty-five years after Henrietta’s death, and even after HeLa cells created a multimillion-dollar industry, Henrietta’s family never received compensation. Even now, Henrietta remains widely unknown, and her family can’t afford health insurance.
The education levels of the Lacks family members were so elementary that they needed people to explain to them what a cell was. They could not read and comprehend scientific journals that researchers rarely gave them in order to better understand the contributions HeLa cells made to cancer research. The family only became aggravated when the first mainstream article published about Henrietta Lacks in Rolling Stone Magazine said that HeLa cells were once being sold for $25 a vial. The actual figures that HeLa cells were bringing in are incalculable, but this was the first (and smallest) figure that the Lacks family members were ever exposed to. The issue that Henrietta’s children began fighting for was regarding how their mother’s cells made so much money, yet they never saw a single penny from it.
The story, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, by Rebecca Skloot starts off with Rebecca Skloot’s narration, of the first time she had heard of Henrietta Lacks. Henrietta Lacks had cervical cancer but technically died of uremic poisoning. When she was treated with radium, they took a sample of her cells and sent it to a scientist by the name of George Gey. Gey wanted to find cells that didn’t stop multiplying even after they were out of the body, and Henrietta’s cancer cells were the 1st known cells in history to fit that description. After Gey found out about Henrietta’s immortal cells, he sent them to scientists all over the world. Jonas Salk used Henrietta’s cells to find the cure for polio. Meanwhile Henrietta’s children didn’t know about any of this, mostly because almost everyone thought that the HeLa cell line stood for Helen Lanes.
This article explains how Henrietta Lacks’ cells (HeLa) were essential in developing the polio vaccine and were used for other scientific milestones, such as cloning, gene mapping and in vitro fertilisation. The cells were also the first to travel to space in order to see effects of zero gravity. The source also mentions how Henrietta’s family were not aware of the experimentation on her cells for twenty
In the first couple chapters of this book, one could tell how major the relationship was between Henrietta and the effects she had on society as a whole. The author had already addressed how Henrietta’s cells have helped humanity cure a number of diseases and discover numerous vaccines. This book
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is a book like a timeline going first her biography, then her childhood to her tragic death; the story of her family over various decades; Skloot’s research and her relationship with the Lacks family, especially Deborah; and the story of the HeLa cells. Tells an interesting story of a clash between race, ethics, and medicine; about a daughter overwhelm with questions about the mother she never knew. Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa was a poor black tobacco farmer whose cells were taken without her knowledge in 1951 and they became one of the most important tools in medicine. They were essential for developing the polio vaccine, cloning, gene mapping, in vitro fertilization, and more. A doctor
My Pappy, Gene, grew up poor. He was the third of twelve children. They lived in a two room farm house with no electricity. In 1953, he his five siblings and their very pregnant mother waited in line by the local church. The line wrapped the church and went down the block. Everyone in town with young children were waiting for the new polio vaccine. Up until this time polio was the most widespread communicable diseases among children in the United States. In the year before the vaccine was released nearly 60,000 children were infected with polio (Beaubien , 2013.) Thousands were left paralyzed and more than 3,000 died (Beaubien, 2013.) Hospitals had set up iron lung units to keep children with polio alive. My pappy, remembers several of his friends contracting polio. His favorite childhood friend was confined to a wheelchair and later died, he was eight years old. This vaccine was seen as a medical miracle. Without it is likely that my pap and several of his siblings may have contracted polio. It is likely then that they would have been left paralyzed, some may have died. My pap may then have never met my Nanny, and I would not have been born. The polio vaccine was able to be produced thanks to the rapid growth of human HeLa cells (Beaubien , 2013.) These amazing cells, took from Henrietta Lacks without her knowing, have become a medical revolution responsible for countless medical breakthroughs. I owe a lot to Mrs. Henrietta Lacks and never knew it.
The discovery of the polio vaccine was an important medical and scientific breakthrough because it saved many lives since the 1950s. In the summer of 1916 the great polio epidemic struck the United states. By the 1950s hundreds of thousands of people had been struck by the poliomyelitis. The highest number of cases occurred in 1953 with over 50,000 people infected with the virus.
“A 1916 Polio epidemic in the United States killed 6,000 people and paralyzed 27,000 more” (“Polio Vaccine”). This lead to the creation of the polio vaccine that has helped to prevent polio for a very long time. The IPV and OPV vaccines played a huge role in all of this. Jonas Salk, who created the IPV vaccine and Albert Sabin, who created the OPV vaccine saved millions of people all around the world from polio (Petersen, Jennifer B). The IPV and OPV polio vaccine helped eliminate polio from the United States and helped prevent polio in other parts of the world (“Polio Vaccine”).
The similarity between the poliovirus and already solved plant virus’s led to a better understanding of how the poliovirus can regenerate within a host. Although the virus was similar to other plant viruses. The poliovirus was covered with more elaborate loops that are the site of monoclonal antibody escape mutations (Hogle, Chow and 229: 1358-1365Filman, Science). Individual proteins of the virus particle are produced by proteolytic cleavages from a larger precursor, yet the amino and carboxy-termini produced by proteolysis are very distinct. By noting this, Hogle and his team were able to conclude that proteolysis was not just making a lot of proteins from one gene, it is also controlling the timing of assembly (Hogle, Chow and Filman, Science 229: 1358-1365).